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Hurricane Lee tracker: Storm approaches New England, Canada

Hurricane Lee is set to hit the northeastern US, with heavy rainfall, wind gusts, and flooding expected in multiple states.

New Englanders are preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Lee, a Category 1 storm that is currently moving towards the northeastern region of the United States. The National Hurricane Center (NHC) has provided the latest updates on the storm, revealing that the eye of Lee has reached wind speeds of up to 80 mph and is moving northeast at a speed of 20 mph as of 8 p.m. on Friday. It is predicted that the storm will make landfall near Nova Scotia on Saturday afternoon.

Regardless of where Lee lands, there is a possibility of heavy rainfall, strong wind gusts, and flooding even in areas far from the center of the storm. Tropical storm warnings have been issued for portions of Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and much of Maine for Friday night through Saturday. These areas may experience wind speeds of up to 69 mph and waves reaching 14 to 19 feet along the coast.

The heavy rainfall from the storm could also lead to flooding in eastern Maine, as well as in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia in southeast Canada on Saturday. The NHC has warned residents in these areas that the weather conditions are likely to cause downed trees and potential power outages.

In anticipation of the volatile weekend, Maine Governor Janet Mills declared a State of Emergency on Thursday. The strongest winds are expected to occur over the state's gulf. While hurricane watches have been lifted for parts of Maine, the Canadian Hurricane Center extended a hurricane watch for parts of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, where similar conditions are expected on Saturday.

Boston is expected to be spared from the brunt of the storm, with Cape Cod and Nantucket experiencing strong winds, potential coastal flooding, and rainfall from Friday into Saturday. Forecasters at WBZ Boston predict that the center of Lee will pass about 200 miles east of southern portions of New England by Saturday morning, thus sparing much of Massachusetts and New Hampshire that were previously under tropical storm warnings.

According to the NHC, the last hurricane to make landfall in New England was Hurricane Bob in 1991, which was a Category 2 storm and the first Atlantic hurricane of that season. It affected parts of Rhode Island and Massachusetts before downgrading to a tropical storm as it moved through Maine. The last hurricane to make landfall in Maine was Hurricane Gerda in 1969, which was a Category 1 storm that hit Eastport.

Scientists had initially predicted five to nine hurricanes for this year's Atlantic storm season, with a 40 percent chance of it being a "normal" season. However, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration revised its prediction last month, anticipating an above-normal level of activity this fall due to record-warm sea surface temperatures.

Newsweek has reached out to the National Weather Service for additional information regarding Hurricane Lee.

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